“That’s cultural appropriation to have that sticker on your computer.”

The decal on my laptop has the words “Live Aloha” accented by a plumeria flower. I get a flutter in my heart every time I see it because it reminds me of my beloved Hawai’i.

I’ve been forcing myself to drive to a coffee shop three days a week to write book 3 in the C’mon Funk Series. The writing came easy with the first two volumes. I just placed my fingers on the keyboard and the words showed up on my screen.

Not so this third go-around.

Hiding Behind Nice: They Can Throw Her Out But They Can’t Shut Her Up! tells the story of what happened during Funk’s term as mayor of Kansas City. If I’m lucky, the book will be scrutinized. Which is why I have to research and develop an outline before I can begin writing the first word. It’s so tedious, hence, the need for a coffee shop where there are fewer distractions.

There I was a few weeks ago, innocently working, when an aging hippie with crusty feet strapped into Teva’s came out of nowhere and stood in front of my computer. When I finally looked up, he uttered the quote above and continued at great speed, apparently needing no response from me.

“Do you know the word ‘aloha’ has multiple meanings?”

Me. Staring.

“It doesn’t just mean hello.”

Me. Wishing this man would leave so I could get back to work.

“Aloha has nuanced layers and many implications.”

Me. Thinking, “Dude! Be gone with your mansplaining-self already!”

“Hawaiian words are symbolic just like Jewish words are. Outsiders use them all the time but they don’t really understand them.”

Me. With some anger rising now from his condescending posture, thinking to myself, “Isn’t it cultural appropriation for him, a non-Hawaiian, to be explaining what the word ‘aloha’ means?”

No matter, this distasteful guy needed none of my thoughts.

Towering above me, he continued his one-sided conversation with a woman he’d never met before.

“Have you been to Hawaii?”

Not hiding the glare in my eyes, I clipped, “Many times.”

“Oh! Okay then. Have a good day.”

And that was that. He was out the door.

Since I didn’t know the exact definition of  “cultural appropriation” —only that it seemed derogatory coming from this guy’s lips—instead of returning to my to-do list, I looked up the phrase: Adoption of an element of one culture by members of another culture.

Oh, I get it.

Like, “Ciao. Al dente. Stiletto. Bravo. Diva. Salute. And the phrase he’s-dead-to-me.” Italian words that Americans use every day.

Later that night, still annoyed by this dude, I recalled the “conversation” with my husband. When I was finished unloading, Funk said, “Glor, that guy doesn’t care about your sticker. He was hitting on you.”

“Hitting on me?! Eww! He has crusty feet! Besides, what women would fall for that?”

“I guess he thinks it works for him.”

I met Funk when I was barely 19, and this summer, it’ll be 45 years that we’ve been married. Since I was very young when we hooked up, I’ve often wondered what it would be like to be single again. But if that guy is what I’d have to deal with, no thanks, I think I’ll stick with Funk.

Here’s to! all the single women out there. I don’t know anyone who would fall for that line. Please ladies, don’t settle. Stay looking until you’ve found someone who is worthy of you. And if men are having the same problem, my heart goes out to them too.

The Photo: Me and Funk, November 2006, a few days before Funk announced he was running for mayor.